Where is this Promised Land? they likely cried out. When will this harsh existence end? They didn’t know. Like us, the ancient Israelites probably hated this ambiguity full of fear and anxiety.
During this time of waiting, many of us turn to Netflix and to the suspenseful action adventure of Fauda, season 3. This immensely popular series helps take our minds off immediate problems. But as a drama it is also ambiguous. We cheer on the good guys. But who are the good guys, really? The answer is not all that clear.
Along the way disturbing questions crop up. The hero, Danon, infiltrates a Palestinian family in Hebron, gaining their trust almost as a family member and encouraging their son Bashar into realizing his dreams as a boxer. He uses Bashar and betrays his family, violating the trust he has gained, to gain information on his true prey: Abu Fauzi. There is violence and suffering on both sides. Close-knit Israeli and Palestinian families are torn apart by events beyond their control – Doron’s family by his long absences and the nature of his work; Bashar’s, by conflict and deception. Fauda presents a morally ambiguous portrayal of Israelis and Palestinians. It’s not all one-sided.
As the plot unfolds, innocents are killed. While we are riveted by dangerous covert action in Gaza, we are saddened by the outcome back in Israel. It was not what we expected and not at all what we had hoped for. Bashar has been turned and like his father before him, he becomes a terrorist. And that’s likely where Season 4 will begin.
Where is this plot going? The cycle of killing and revenge seems endless. There is death, suffering and immense pain on both sides. Are there really any “good guys”?